Joint Bank Accounts; Whose Money?

In the earlier days of my elderly father’s cognitive decline (vascular dementia) we decided it would be wise for me to become a joint bank account holder on his accounts should he no longer be able to manage, as is now the case. We duly added me as a joint account holder with him a few years ago. I have my own separate account solely in my name. I continue to live in his house, which has been my home for many years

From my point of view the accounts are his and it is his money, however I am wondering if that is the view point of others?:

  • Due to my father being placed in a care home recently (Sept 2021) my Carers Allowance has been suspended and I need to seek some other financial support, may be Universal Credit or whatever. But will the joint accounts be viewed as my money too?
  • For the care home he is sufficiently above the threshold that he has to pay the enormous fees himself. But if the joint account is viewed as my money too, then would he perhaps be viewed as having only half the amount he does have?

Can anyone comment or enlighten me as to what may be the official or law view point on this?

My mum kept losing her Halifax pass book. The manager visited her as she was housebound and suggested that she made it a joint account with me, then I could manage it for her.
When it came to Social Services Assessment, they only took half the value of the account as being hers. So instead of £25,000, above their limit, she had just £12,5000, so below the limit.

How old are you?
Has the house always been your home?

That’s good news and bad news, because if Universal Credit take the same view I may not get any because it would take me above threshold.

How old are you?

A few decades younger than my 97 year old father.

Has the house always been your home?

Since the late 1990’s, though I’ve had time away for universities and travel.

I asked about your age because if you are over 60, then the value of the house cannot be taken into consideration if your dad needed to move into residential care.
If it’s been your home for many years, again, it may not be counted as selling it would make you homeless. This is a minefield!
If he has severe dementia, he might be entitled to free care. Search for “NHS Continuing Healthcare Grogan”.

Certainly is.

I became a joint account holder on my father’s account to help him out with his declining cognitive ability, not to have his money. However I fear some may see this as me having more money than I do, it’s my father’s money not mine, it’s not an issue yet but I fear it could become one. I am awaiting an appointment with an adviser on benefits to try and prevent potential catastrophe.

If he has severe dementia, he might be entitled to free care. Search for “NHS Continuing Healthcare Grogan”.

An internet search on NHS Continuing Healthcare Grogan brings up a lot of results, a little too much for me to read and cope with on top of everything else at the moment - it’s on my StillToDo list.